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J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2008 Apr;47(4):426-34. doi: 10.1097/CHI.0b013e31816429d3.

New insights into the comorbidity between ADHD and major depression in adolescent and young adult females.

Author information

1
Clinical and Research Program in Pediatric Psychopharmacology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA 02114, USA. jbiederman@partners.org

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

The main aim of this study was to evaluate the association between attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and major depression (MD) in adolescent and young adult females.

METHOD:

Subjects were females with (n = 140) and without (n = 122) ADHD ascertained from pediatric and psychiatric settings. Subjects were followed prospectively for 5 years into adolescence and young adulthood and reassessed in multiple nonoverlapping domains including psychiatric, cognitive, interpersonal, family, and educational functioning.

RESULTS:

Females with ADHD had a 2.5 times higher risk for MD at adolescent follow-up compared with control females, adjusting for psychiatric comorbidity. MD in females with ADHD was associated with an earlier age at onset, greater than twice the duration, more severe depression-associated impairment, a higher rate of suicidality, and a greater likelihood of requiring psychiatric hospitalization than MD in control girls. Parental MD and proband mania were significant predictors of MD among females with ADHD, independently of other predictors.

CONCLUSIONS:

MD emerging in the context of ADHD in females is an impairing and severe comorbidity worthy of further clinical and scientific considerations.

PMID:
18388760
DOI:
10.1097/CHI.0b013e31816429d3
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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